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A View from the Altar / At last, a shale oil power plant! Oh, wait. It’s in Jordan
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At last, a shale oil power plant! Oh, wait. It’s in Jordan

Jordan says they’re the world’s fourth largest holder of shale oil reserves. If you’re wondering who’s number one, why that’d be the United States which has more oil in shale than all the petroleum reserves in the Middle Eastern countries combined.  Our energy reserves truly are ginormous, gargantuan, humongous, or any other hokey size superlative you’d care to sling at them.

For many years, Jordan has been energy poor and dependent on the good will of OPEC.  But OPEC nations aren’t looking so stable any more, so Jordan has decided to become master of her own fate.  They are entering a joint venture with China to develop their own shale oil reserves.  Since shale development is more like a mining operation than a typical oil extraction process, it’s better suited to making electricity than for pumping gas.  So they’re going to make a shale-oil burning power plant.

What a pity that this headline is not to be found in the United States.  In fact, my low-tech Google search didn’t turn up any front line American news sources carrying this story, which is why the link above points to the Khaleej Times.  If you’ll suffer a snipe at our mainstream media, the coastal elite seem to think gasoline comes from a gas station, and electricity from a socket in the wall.  The effect of energy on the prosperity and security of the world is an issue they appear ill prepared to comprehend.

Fact is, new American energy resources are pretty much off limits at this time.  To develop natural resources, you need the feds to act.  For the feds to act, Congress must act.  For Congress to act, all the Republicans and a preponderance of the Democrats must act.  For the Democrats to act, their chaotic coalition must be unified in opposition to their environmentalist fringe.  For their coalition to overcome the environmentalists, they must have a political situation in which the environmentalists cannot hold any other factions hostage over any other issue for the foreseeable future.  When’s the last time that happened?

Can anyone seriously imagine it taking place in the current climate?  The two parties are so closely balanced that the Democrats will not risk offending any sliver of their power base, no matter how crackpot their beliefs or how anti-American their actual policies are.  (See “warming, global.”)

So Jordan, that fearsome Gibraltar of industrial might, can develop shale oil, and we can’t.  Every day, Americans are told that shale oil can’t be developed.  You as a voter need to know that shale oil can be developed, and economies with far less technical capability than ours are actually going after it while the nation that conquered the moon can no longer disturb its own rocks.

Here’s the depressing truth: No one need ask why Americans cannot develop our own energy resources.  The reason is clear: A tiny faction of the Democrat party is abusing the two party system and the arcane rules of the Senate to prevent it.

otherbrothersteve@gmail.com

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